Veterans have until Aug. 9 to file for retroactive benefits for toxin exposure-related conditions

A VA event at Ala Moana Hotel today will help answer your questions.Joining us to tell us more is Amy Rohlfs of the VA Pacific Islands Health Care System.
Published: Aug. 6, 2023 at 10:06 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - This Wednesday, Aug. 9, is the deadline for veterans and their survivors to claim retroactive benefits under the “Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics” or PACT Act.

Veteran Affairs’ Hawaii Division is hosting a face-to-face event to help veterans register and answer questions today at the Garden Lanai Ballroom of the Ala Moana Hotel from 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

More than 4,000 veterans have registered for PACT Act benefits so far.

Amy Rohlfs, Public Affairs Officer of the VA Pacific Islands Health Care System, joined HNN’s Sunrise Weekends to explain details and how to apply.

“I want to make sure that all veterans know that even if they are already registered for VA services, this is an expansion. It is expanding healthcare benefits and compensation,” Rohlfs said.

Who is eligible? Veterans, their dependents and surviving family members of a veteran can apply for healthcare and payments if the veteran was exposed to burn pits, agent orange or other toxic materials during their military service.

The Pact Act covers more than 20 health conditions assumed to be caused by toxic exposure. Before the law, many veterans were denied benefits because they couldn’t prove the toxic exposure made them sick.

In order to receive retroactive benefits, backdated to when the law was established on Aug. 10, 2022, applicants must register with the VA before or on Aug. 9, 2023.

After Aug. 9, veterans can claim PACT Act benefits from that date going forward. There is no deadline.

Applications can be submitted in person, through or by calling 1-800-MYVA411.